Conor Gallagher says Chelsea set the standard they have to reach with their FA Cup win at Aston Villa.
The midfielder scored his first goal of the season in Wednesday’s 3-1 fourth-round replay win.
Nicolas Jackson’s header and Enzo Fernandez’s sensational free kick helped the visitors to victory, despite Moussa Diaby’s injury-time consolation.
Chelsea, 11th in the Premier League, came into the game in disarray after 4-1 and 4-2 defeats to Liverpool and Wolves respectively and Gallagher knows they cannot let things drop.
“There was a lot of hunger and that’s what we need every game,” he said, with Chelsea hosting Leeds in the fifth round. “I think before the game you could sense that because the last two games have not been good enough by our standards.
“Everyone was really up for it and raring to give our fans a good performance and we did.
“We know how we can play – we showed that. A lot of times this season we haven’t been good enough, but also a lot of times we have been really good against the top teams so we know how good we can be.
“We’re really buzzing and Villa are a top team so to beat them, and the way we did it, was brilliant so we will take a lot of confidence from that, and hopefully take it into the next game.”
Gallagher’s 11th-minute opener was his first goal of the season, and first since last May.
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“Obviously, I like to score goals and I want to score more,” he said. “This season I haven’t done so and hopefully I can get a few more.
“It was nice to get my goal and with it being my first of the season, it was really important to me. I think it helped us gain confidence in the game which helped us win, so I’m really happy.”
Villa suffered a second straight home defeat and boss Unai Emery is aiming for consistency with his side still challenging for Champions League qualification and in the Europa Conference League.
He said: “We had an opportunity in the FA Cup. It’s not easy and we are trying to be consistent, to increase our level and be a contender in each competition.
“We are facing matches like Chelsea and have to understand we are in our process. Our process is try to be consistent and get some regularity in our way. My objective is we have to feel confidence and comfortable at home even when we are not getting a good result.”